last minute weeknight pasta

Got people coming over at the last minute? Realize you don’t have what you thought you did in the fridge or the freezer? Then look no further for inspiration.

You can turn most anything in your pantry in to a last minute amazing weeknight dinner – let me show you just one example.

Last minute weeknight pasta made with the following:
– casarrece pasta
– jar of pasta sauce
– garlic
– sweet onion
– salami
– salt+pepper
– olive oil

Where do you start?

Crush, mince, chop the garlic and onions up nice and small, then toss them in a deep pot with some olive oil – like an awesome Dutch oven. My weapon of choice for slicing and dicing are Shun Premier knives – like the Santoku and Chef’s Knife and they’ve only sliced off a few bits of finger and fingernails – good thing we live so close to Northwest Hospital and their admitting is super fast.

Garlic resting on my Shun Premier Chef's Knife
Garlic resting on my Shun Premier Chef’s Knife

While the garlic and onions soften and brown slice up the salami (you can sub pepperoni, leftover sausage, or really any cooked meat) in to small pieces. And once the garlic and onions are softened drop in the salami. Cook until it starts to kind of curl and get caramelized and delicious looking.

Salami ready for pasta sauce
Salami ready for pasta sauce

Once all that is ready – dump in the jar of pasta sauce (my go to lately has been Lucini Basil and Tomato from Amazon Fresh and let it simmer on low to medium for as long as you want.

While it simmers then you make the pasta and there are some bottle&flame rules on making pasta that I follow…

Salt must go in the pasta water – lately I’ve just been using Morton’s salt (probably the iodized stuff in the blue container). Put the salt in before it boils and for some reason I think it helps it boil faster or maybe I just feel that way – like driving a side street versus the highway in heavy traffic to get home at just the same time. Then right before it boils I drop in a glug of extra virgin olive oil (EVOO – for those who love the Food Network or Rachel Ray or Mario Batali).

Pasta boiling in my West Elm Dutch Oven
Pasta boiling in my West Elm Dutch Oven

Boil the pasta for whatever the box says – I’m not a pasta savant so I just follow the rules. Doing it all in this order helps me force myself to let the pasta sauce cook long enough.

Once the pasta is done – dump it in the sauce and mix it up nice & good. Let it simmer and meld together while you pour a drink and tear up some bread or shave in some cheese.

Then serve it up, put your feet up, eat up and drink up. Deeeelish!!!

Up next – leftover pulled pork with some extra special ingredients and an ode to my favorite knives…

One comment

  • Sounds yummy… all ingredients we can have in the pantry and be ready to go!!!

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